Since earlier this year, France has been hosting a festival devoted to the Japanese culture. This year marks 160 years of diplomatic ties between France and Japan, and the festival titled “Japonismes 2018: les âmes en resonance” features everything from prehistoric artworks to what its organizers bill as the first of its kind VR concert in Europe. As per the director of the festival, Korehito Masuda, “It’s the largest extravaganza of its kind ever held outside Japan.”
France competed against Spain and Russia to host the cultural season devoted to Japan, winning out owing to the country’s obsession for all things Japanese. Many things, including Japanese cinema exhibits and events devoted to Japanese comics, are a part of it. Most of the famous sites in Paris pay homage to the culture of Japan and will continue to do so until the completion of the eight-month-long cultural season. Earlier in September, the Eiffel Tower was light in thematic colors of Japan including its national flag. On the other hand, Kohei Nawa’s “Throne” sculptural installation has been a welcome sight below the glass pyramid of the Musée du Louvre. As people on Louvre Museum private tours get to the courtyard area, where Ieoh Ming Pei designed pyramid resides, they are welcomed by the sight of the golden Throne installed there.
Other events across the country intend to show the global influence of Japan. The President of France, Emmanuel Macron, said that the culture of Japan has influenced many French artists from Claude Monet and the Impressionist period artists to those in the present day. France is the largest overseas market for Manga comics from the Land of the Rising Sun. Masuda said, “The French, more than all of the other nations, know Japanese culture best.”
Another event, to look forward to during your Paris private tours, is the VR concert. Its budget has been met by Japan’s capital, Tokyo. Hatsune Miku is a virtual singer, whose unique voice has already filled stadiums in Asian and North American regions. She will take the center stage in the City of Lights this December. Her concert is something to look forward to for those on a trip to the capital city of France.
Commenting on that, Masuda said, “We wanted to show the continuity of Japanese tradition up to the present day through the integration of traditional art and technology.”